National Museum of Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

The National Museum of Denmark (Nationalmuseet) is Denmark’s largest museum of cultural history, comprising the histories of Danish and foreign cultures, alike. The museum's main domicile is located a short distance from Strøget. It contains exhibits from around the world, from Greenland to South America.

The museum has a number of national commitments, particularly within the following key areas: archaeology, ethnology,numismatics, ethnography, natural science, conservation, communication, building antiquarian activities in connection with the churches of Denmark as well as the handling of the Danefæ (the National Treasures).

The museum covers 14,000 years of Danish history, from the reindeer-hunters of the Ice Age, Vikings and works of art created in praise of God in the Middle Ages, when the church played a huge role in Danish life. Danish coins from Viking times to the present and coins from ancientRome and Greece, as well as examples of the coinage and currencies of other cultures are exhibited also. Furthermore the National Museum keeps Denmark’s largest and most varied collection of objects from the ancient cultures of Greece and Italy, the Near East and Egypt. For example, it holds a collection of objects that were retrieved during the Danish excavation of Tell Shemshara in Iraq in 1957. In addition to this, there are exhibits about who the Danish people are and were, stories of everyday life and special occasions, stories of the Danish state and nation, but most of all stories of different people’s lives in Denmark from 1560 to 2000.

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Category: Museums in Denmark

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4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Robert Prol (6 months ago)
Wonderful museum with lots of ideas for us Danish Modern lovers. We really enjoyed our time in this museum. It's well laid out, and the exhibits are nicely organized. The food was good in the cafeteria.
Thomas Just Sørensen (7 months ago)
Wonderful museum, in particular worth a visit if you have kids. The children's museum is one of a kind. Be prepared to stay for hours, bring plenty of water, and dress the small ones in layers. They will exhaust themselves if you let them. The rest of the museum is worth a visit. In particular the areas on Denmark.
Johan Møller (7 months ago)
Amazing exhibition. The best I have seen from the national museum. Engaging, interesting and beautifully executed. Thanks to the danish designer Jim Lyngvild and the new management of the museum. There are tons of people here and everyone seems excited and blown away. I hope the rest of the danish museums will be inspired from this. This is the way you get more people into the museums. Educate, Excite and Engage ...
Socratis S. (7 months ago)
Its one of the most detailed Museum I've ever been. You get a well rounded idea of life from even before bronze age till now . Of course priorities Danish history as a whole but you can also find artifacts from other places of the world such as the Mediterranean .A must if you travel for knowledge of history
Andreas Offenhäuser (8 months ago)
Great place to get a very wide range of Denmark's history. From stone age to latest pop culture. Exhibitions are explained in Danish and English. Especially the 'secret' interactive events placed throughout the museum make it a special experience. 2-3 hours of you stroll through the entire place.
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Jelling Runestones

The Jelling stones are massive carved runestones from the 10th century, found at the town of Jelling in Denmark. The older of the two Jelling stones was raised by King Gorm the Old in memory of his wife Thyra. The larger of the two stones was raised by King Gorm's son, Harald Bluetooth in memory of his parents, celebrating his conquest of Denmark and Norway, and his conversion of the Danes to Christianity. The runic inscriptions on these stones are considered the most well known in Denmark.

The Jelling stones stand in the churchyard of Jelling church between two large mounds. The stones represent the transitional period between the indigenous Norse paganism and the process of Christianization in Denmark; the larger stone is often cited as Denmark's baptismal certificate (dåbsattest), containing a depiction of Christ. They are strongly identified with the creation of Denmark as a nation state and both stones feature one of the earliest records of the name 'Danmark'.

After having been exposed to all kinds of weather for a thousand years cracks are beginning to show. On the 15th of November 2008 experts from UNESCO examined the stones to determine their condition. Experts requested that the stones be moved to an indoor exhibition hall, or in some other way protected in situ, to prevent further damage from the weather.

Heritage Agency of Denmark decided to keep the stones in their current location and selected a protective casing design from 157 projects submitted through a competition. The winner of the competition was Nobel Architects. The glass casing creates a climate system that keeps the stones at a fixed temperature and humidity and protects them from weathering. The design features rectangular glass casings strengthened by two solid bronze sides mounted on a supporting steel skeleton. The glass is coated with an anti-reflective material that gives the exhibit a greenish hue. Additionally, the bronze patina gives off a rusty, greenish colour, highlighting the runestones' gray and reddish tones and emphasising their monumental character and significance.